Saturday, July 01, 2006

Lack of Sleep

Gaza City
Saturday 1st July 2006 9.15 am

I have spent the last five hours trying to conjure up the right words to explain the effects of lack of sleep. It is not the fact that the hours for the last few days have been so insane that I have not had the time to sleep, but the fact that you cannot get much sleep without being woken up by the ongoing Israeli operations.

Now this story can start in one of many ways, but it is best described as a visual picture that everyone can relate too.

In all of our bathrooms at home we have extractor fans that basically suck out the steam and stuff from the air, and over time these get full of gunk and dust that matts together and forms basically black gunk, when we remember every few months we take apart the extractor fan and to the best of our ability clean out the gunk.

For anyone who is intrested that is no longer a problem for me in Room 101 in The Beach Hotel Gaza.

Now we all have romantic pictures and ideals of what it is like to go supersonic, from military hero films of the sixties of clean cut pilots breaking the final frontier, to the little digital readout that you would see from film of the concorde going supersonic between London and New York.

BUT and I say BUT in big bold capital letters , there is a difference when the Israeli Air Force uses this as a weapon of intimidation and threat, throughout the day and night , jets scream into Gaza and timing it to maximum effect they go supersonic at low altitude right over the city.

The air is sucked back for a moment and you can see the windows start to bow, the air goes into a vacuum and with a force that destroys your senses for the moment the air explodes like a train crash around you and feel the air around you contract and expand.

And a few seconds later the noise of the jet can be heard and that tells you that it is not a military strike but just a wake up from the Israeli Air Force , there seems to be a pattern that sees them come in with two sweeps the first of the day is at around 4:30 am the second within the half hour before five. Then another round an hour or so later once again two in succession.

This has been going on for nights now, and I go to sleep waiting and bracing for the first supersonic crash. Wondering if and when perhaps my hotel room window will implode and send glass shattering everywhere or perhaps just crack it, like other windows in the hotel.

So how does this story come back to my bathroom fan, well the effect of the first sonic boom this morning because I had my room window open, because the air conditioner is not working due to lack of electricity. Well the vacuum of the air being sucked out due to the boom sucked all the gunk out of the fan and my bathroom and toilet was covered in black slime gunk fluffs.

And thus my day started today in Gaza.

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